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Mad Quickies 6.13

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Prelude to Einstein on the Fritz
Professor Schickele’s fond send-up, a classic.


Featured image is Nick Cave’s Soundsuit, 2009, human hair.
Image courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery.



Geologic Universe, vault-keeper. Sheer Brick Studio, principal. Empty Set, designer. Bethlehem Mounties, media. WDIY 88.1FM NPR station programmer. Skepchick.

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  1. I love Philip Glass and I love PDQ Bach. How have I never heard Einstein on the Fritz before? So hilarious! Can anyone tell what word/phrase the bass is singing parodying “Koyaanisqatsi”?

  2. I got to see a live performance of Einstein on the Fritz lo these many years back, with Prof. Schickele on the piano.

    It may be worth pointing out that the harmonic basis for “Einstein on the Fritz” is none other than that workhorse of beginning piano students, J. S. Bach’s Prelude No. 1 in C (from the Well-Tempered Klavier). It’s a very repetitive piece to begin with, so Schickele just repeats every measure 6 times to give it that Glassy sound!

    (Though I hasten to add that J. S. Bach’s piece is hardly minimalism, at least not as Glass et al practice it. Glass focuses more on harmonic minimalism, and the Bach prelude, while rhythmically minimal, undergoes constant harmonic movement.)

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